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Starting Point

News/Business. Soledad O'Brien. Soledad O'Brien looks ahead to the days top news and events. New.

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02:00:00

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U.s. 55, Us 30, Egypt 30, Libya 20, United States 14, Benghazi 13, Cairo 12, Romney 10, Yemen 9, America 9, Sam Bacile 6, Jamie Rubin 6, Cnn 5, Obama Administration 5, Obama 5, Washington 5, Robin Wright 4, Tim Roemer 4, Usaa 4, Usaa Bank 4,
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  CNN    Starting Point    News/Business. Soledad O'Brien. Soledad O'Brien  
   looks ahead to the days top news and events. New.  

    September 14, 2012
    4:00 - 5:59am PDT  

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of states, jamie rubin and richard williamson. u.s. ambassador tim roemer. robin wright a highly respected middle east expert and "time" magazine's editor bobby ghosh. >> it is friday. the 14th of september. "starting point" begins right now. >> and our "starting point" this morning, rage against america. anti-american protests erupting in more countries overnight. and with friday prayers ending, u.s. embassies around the world are bracing for more this morning. >> overnight, the anger and the defiance that began wednesday over the anti-muslim movie in the u.s. spreading, look at this map. 11 countries, we're talking all the we from egypt to as far west as morocco and as far east as indiana. >> egypt the main hotspot right now. where the violence first erupted three days ago. this morning there were more flashes, protesters setting fires, and the egyptian military
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deploying tanks to calm things down. but we just learned that the muslim brotherhood has canceled nationwide protests, announcing instead that a protest will be held only in tahrir square against that film about the prophet muhammad. >> to yemen, at least five protesters were killed. we showed you those pictures yesterday morning of the protest outside the u.s. embassy. they stormed that embassy and the capital city of sanaa. they were climbing the walls, setting tires on fire. water cannons pushing them back. >> in iran, hundreds of protesters have been gathering outside the swiss embassy in tehran, shouting death to the united states. the swiss embassy handles u.s. interests in iran, and is being heavily guarded right now by police. >> as for the president, president obama vowing all necessary steps. security being beefed up to protect u.s. citizens all around the world. >> and, and a major development in libya. the first arrests in connection with the attack that killed two well-respected american diplomats and two former navy s.e.a.l.s.
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>> want to begin our worldwide coverage this morning out of cairo with ian lee. ian talk to me a little bit about this world via twitter from the muslim brotherhood that they are announcing the protests will only be held in tahrir square. why is that? >> well, brook, what the muslim brotherhood is saying, is that by canceling the protests around egypt, they hope to curb any violence that happens from those protests. but they said they're holding a symbolic protest in tahrir square. they also added that because it's symbolic, means there's not going to be a lot of people, a low turnout. you know, they can't have one protest in one place. that's going to draw people. but right now in tahrir square what we're seeing, we're seeing a couple thousand people in the square. so low numbers, according to egypt standards. not really the numbers we've seen in previous protests. >> do you think the egyptians will abide by that?
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>> well, that's hard to tell. you know, the muslim brotherhood is just one group out of many here. and there are also other people who don't associate themselves with any sort of party. right in front of the embassy right now there is somewhat of a lull in the clashes. the police have moved behind a large brick wall that's blocked off the street from the embassy. so protesters can't make their way there. but we're seeing clashes pick up and die down throughout the day. so, right now, we have a lull but it could change very quickly. >> ian, we have heard there were arrests overnight. as many as 37. it does seem that the regime is doing more to crack down on these protests right now. yes? >> well that's exactly right, john. we've seen the regime respond a lot differently than we did tuesday night. they have arrested 37. 30 people have been charged with thuggery. with attacking police officers and destroying public property.
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but we're also seeing egyptian security forces secure the embassy, secure the area around the embassy, and not allowing protesters to move any closer than about 30 yards away, where the big wall is. >> ian lee for us in cairo. we'll be checking back in with you. >> moving on to libya now, where authorities have announced four arrests and the city airport is reportedly shut down. this as the obama administration is employing a full-court press to secure its diplomatic facilitie facilities. the president says those responsible for the attack that killed four americans in libya will be brought to justice. >> we now know all four victims have been identified. let's go to barbara starr at the pentagon. barbara, these other two gentlemen who were killed, former navy s.e.a.l.s. >> former navy s.e.a.l.s, indeed, brooke. today, deeply mourned by their brothers in arms. the entire navy s.e.a.l. community. the administration is looking at these four arrests. the libyans now saying perhaps
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some of those arrested not directly involved in the attacks. but it's the kind of response the u.s. wants to see, and is part of this full-court press, if you will, across the region to press host governments, to, in the case of libya, pursue the investigation. in the case of all of these countries, ensure that u.s. embassies around the world are protected by the host government. this is really the baseline of what is going on. now, and put in place any additional security measures that are needed. but i think it's really important to look at some of the context, when you put that map up, of all the countries where there appears to be unrest, many of these places, the u.s. has to really assess what is going on. in some places, any of these -- some of these protests are very small. and in afghanistan, for example, we've got reports, small and actually totally peaceful. so this is a very complex picture. in places like jordan, often after friday prayers there are, if you will, regular protests.
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people come out and protest against the government. it's fairly routine. so, this may -- and you see the cancellation of the nationwide protests by the muslim brother hood in egypt. so i think this is an emerging picture. a lot of concern to make sure the embassies are protected. but also some context and perspective here, of a very complepicture across the middle east and north africa. perhaps different things going on in many of these countries. >> barbara starr. thank you. >> all right. i want to bring in jamie rubin and robin wright. jamie is a former assistant u.s. secretary of state, formerly a counselor under governor cuomo. robin wright is the author of the book "rock the casbah." jamie, the muslim brotherhood calling off nationwide protests, apparently scaling down the reaction to that film. why? what are we seeing here? >> well, i think what we're seeing is the government of egypt, president mursi, who was
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a member of the muslim brotherhood, i'm sure they coordinate their activities, and i think they're responding to the phone call from president obama. i think they realize that in the first 24 hours after this terrible programdy, the images coming out of egypt were not of a friend. they were mixed messages coming from the government in terms of condemning the attacks on the united states, while condemning the film that allegedly started all of this. so on the streets in egypt, you know, you're seeing, in a sense, the first wave of protests were democracy. the second wave of protests are islamic extremism, and it's those two forces that will determine how they interact, how they develop, who wins the battles of the politics of extremism inside egypt will determine for us whether egypt ends up as a success story or not. but so far, they seem to be moving in the right direction. >> can president mohamed mursi,
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can his former political movement, the muslim brotherhood, control what happens on the street? >> no. but they can control whether they're a part of increasing the pressure. certainly the president can send forces out, as he's now doing in strength, something they should have done right away when they realized that they couldn't protect the perimeter of the u.s. embassy. that's their responsibility. and in the early moments, the messages were expressions of understanding for why people were protesting, rather than rejecting the violence in terms of condemning it, and using the forces of government to protect the united states. and failing to do that raised questions about whether egypt was going to remain a friend of the united states. >> robin, i have a question for you, because speaking of twitter, it's incredible all this going back and forth. the tweets between the muslim brotherhood yesterday and of course the u.s. embassy in cairo, basically the muslim brotherhood has been tweets. they have one in english,
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basically saying that they're relieved none of the u.s. embassy workers were harmed. then they tweeted in arabic, translated as egyptians, rise to defend the prophet. so u.s. embassy in cairo tweet back and they say this, thanks. by the way, have you checked out your own arabic feeds. i hope you know we read those, too. what do you make of this back and forth on twitter, robin? and also, just talk about how, i don't know, the challenge from -- for the muslim brotherhood handling domestic interests, obviously, but international issues, as well. >> well, on the level of social media this was a force that was critical in rallying people to the streets to challenge the rule of dictators across the region. and it's also being use d and exploited to try to foment opposition over the sensitive film made in the united states. but the bigger question is, how the muslim brotherhood has responded. so far, i think the thing that's striking is that the numbers
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that have turned out on the streets are still comparatively small. that this is a stark contrast to the tens of thousands, or hundreds of thousands, and in some countries millions of people who actually put their lives on the line to challenge autocrats. that you have very small fraction of people, so far, it could well grow in significant ways, but so far, it's been a very small sliver of society. and that means that the majority of people have actually signaled that they want no part of this kind of demonstration. that they're looking for a different kind of era. the post-revolutionary base. the region is now moving into this critical moment of shaping and defining a new order. and rule of law is very much a part of it. they're all coping with how do you write a constitution? and the way this is handled on the streets will be very critical to this fragile process. >> jamie, robin, there's a lot of talk today about something else the president has done in the last 48 hours. in addition to the phone call to mohamed mursi he did an
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interview where he described the u.s. relationship with egypt. whether they're an ally or an enemy. i wonder if we can listen to that interview right now. >> it's not possible that president obama -- >> well, that obviously was a different piece of sound than i was referring to. it was on the street there in cairo, with protesters clearly blaming the obama administration for the anti-islamic film itself. how important is that? is there trouble distinguishing between what happens in the united states and the official policy of the united states government? >> well, it is hard for people in that part of the world, it seems, to grasp the fact that something published on the internet, put out on the
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internet, is approved by the united states government. obviously it is not. that's the whole point of the internet, is that it has the freedom and people to do this. but in the age of modern communications, these things are going to happen, and it's going to require the leaders in that part of the world to educate their people about the distinction between individual acts that can be condemned, the messages in them, and the acts of government. government can't prevent this sort of thing, as long as we believe in free speech, and that's something that is hard, obviously, in that part of the world, to understand. >> -- being lost because we've heard all the sound bites from the president, from washington, from the state department, very much so, vehemently condemning what happened. yet the message somewhere between the u.s. and egypt, it's not being heard. robin, you agree? >> it's not being heard. but look we're in a process where a lot of these people don't understand some of the basics about freedom of the press. one of the big questions, i
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think, is what the united states will do about it. and whether this is a potential hate crime that needs to be investigated. in terms of what its intent was. we don't know a lot about the film. the forensics of figuring out how it was made, why it was made, i think are still to play out. >> all right, robin wright in washington, jamie rubin in new york. we're talk about this all morning. thank you for being here with us this morning. >> the man behind this film that we keep talking about, this anti-muslim film that sparked much of this violence has been identified. but, surprise, he's not coming forward. miguel marquez actually dug into this man. his name is nakoula basseley nakoula. his shady past, and then knocked on the filmmakers door. watch this. >> this is the best address we have for sam bacile, or nakoula basseley, whatever you want to call him. you can see all of the media is camped out here. we're going to try one more time to talk to him. mr. nas eel, mr. nakoula?
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it's miguel marquez with cnn. >> jewish groups they are blasting some of the early media coverage of this story, calling it irresponsible, potentially dangerous. some news organizations initially reported that this film, loosely, was being financed by a hundred jews. and on the campaign trail it looks like mitt romney is trying to move on. this after harsh criticism for the obama administration for its response to the unrest in libya and the middle east. romney was trying to pivot in an interview with abc news after the president questioned whether the republican nominee thought through the ramifications of his remarks. >> what i said was exactly the same conclusion the white house reached, which was that the statement was inappropriate. that's why they backed away from it as well. >> no direct response when the president says you shoot first and aim later? >> well, this is politics. i'm not going to worry about the campaign. >> obviously the issue is still
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following romney during a rally in virginia yesterday he was interrupted by a protesters who thoughted why are you politicizing libya. >> we are going to talk about the violence, the ramifications, the politics here throughout this morning. this is still very much a developing throughout the middle east. we're going to bring it to you all the latest obviously as it happens. but also ahead this morning here on "starting point," the fed stimulus plan. right? we have to talk about the economy. it is igniting wall street. sending stocks leaping to five-year highs. >> big news. is the fed only artificially inflating the economy? will the bold plan actually jolt your bottom line? these are big questions, you're watching "starting point." jack, you're a little boring. boring. boring. [ jack ] after lauren broke up with me, i went to the citi private pass page and decided to be...not boring. that's how i met marilyn... giada... really good. yes! [ jack ] ...and alicia.
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now cnn is going in-depth this week into the economic issues facing this country. and today, the federal reserve's new steps to juice our economic outlook. >> the central bank will buy billions of dollars in the mortgage-backed securities. that begins today. and apparently wall street really likes what it heard because investors sent stocks up to the highest levels in five years. >> christine romans breaks this down for us as always. she is joining us here this morning with a box of doughnuts. >> doughnuts! >> for a reason. >> not just because you're being nice. because you're seeing a humongous sugar rush. you've got a big, big boom higher in stock, the economy on a sugar rush with doughnuts, doughnuts. the economy sneads a square meal. right? and the fed is giving them as much energy as it possibly can in the absence of an economy that's working on its own. so what it's going to do, the fed is going to buy more doughnuts. it's going to buy back mortgage-backed securities, specifically it's going to keep mortgage rates low. it's going to pump money into the system. it hopes to encourage borrowing and more spending and eventually
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hiring. it's buying $40 billion of mortgage-backed securities each month. it's called qe-3 and critics say qe-3 is nothing more than a big box of doughnuts. it's not real nutrition. but you know what? it's all we have right now. this does not use taxpayer money. instead the fed expands money supply, electronically crediting banks with more funds. the fed is not giving an end date. translation there, the sugar rush will keep going until the economy gets better on its own. the dow, the s&p 500, five-year highs. nasdaq hit a 12-year high, the home builders rose 3% because they think this is going to be good for the housing market. the stimulus could be a double-edged sword. the stimulus in place, the economy is so weak that it's not growing on its own so the fed is trying to give it just a little jolt of sugar to keep it going. >> sounds like wall street likes doughnuts. but this is the third stimulus, right? >> a lot of doughnuts. >> you look at the unemployment
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rate. you were talking about that, what was it the august jobs numbers. still pretty high. what good will this do? >> this is the reason why ben bernanke is doing this. because unemployment is still too high. it's the law of diminishing returns. with each dose of stimulus the fits lessen. again the doughnuts. bernanke acknowledged that in june. he said policymakers are taking it into account. yesterday he admitted this new dose of stimulus can help but it won't cure everything. >> i want to be clear that while i think we can make a meaningful and significant contribution to this problem to reducing this problem, we can't solve it. we don't have the tools that are strong enough to solve the unemployment problem. >> so in the absence of a square meal, from either congress, or from the economy itself, from lending at banks, from small businesses hiring and big companies hiring, the fed is stepping in and giving us more doughnuts. >> to keep your metaphor going. they're giving doughnuts but saying it will be an unlimited supply, they will keep feeding as long as they have to.
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that is different. >> that's telling us that they're concerned about what they see in the economy. they have this very tricky line to walk because they have to tell people it's time to be confident, we've got your back, we're going to keep feeding you. right? but then they've got to be worried about, if they keep feeding us doughnuts, what happens at the end? inflation? are we concerned about the fact that the fed is the only game in town. pretty interesting. it's really interesting stuff. >> christine romans, thank you. and thanks for bringing the doughnuts. >> there's only 11 here because jamie rubin already took one. >> thank you, christine. >> happening right now, we want to take you back to those anti-american protests escalating in certain hot spots in the mideast. and news this morning, libya has arrested four people in the deadly assault on the u.s. consulate in benghazi. we're going to get you the latest through the region. >> and perhaps on a lighter note, another clothes-off controversy for the royals. yes, i just said that. this time the duchess kate caught with her top off and the palace ready to take action. details when "starting point" is back in a moment. ♪
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got some new developments for you right now. we have just learned that yemeni security forces have fired warning shots and water cannons. apparently people in yemen in the capital city are protesting, trying once again to reach the u.s. embassy there. >> the protesters are calling for the expulsion of the u.s. envoy in sanaa and burned the american flag there again today. mohammed jamjoom is monitoring this from the region. what is the latest? >> john, eyewitnesses telling us that a crowd of between 800 to 900 angry demonstrators went outside the u.s. embassy today in sanaa, again, demonstrating
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against that film they say was insulting to islam. denigrating to the prophet muhammad. this is the second day of protests we're told, and security forces fired warning shots into the air to disperse the crowd, and they also have deployed and used water cannons against that crowd, as well, to try to disperse them. still a lot of details we're trying to find out. we're trying to get a hold of u.s. officials at the embassy, as well. this is a worrying development. as of last night, even after the situation had calmed in the capital of yemen we had learned that at least four protesters were killed as a result of those clashes yesterday. and there was a lot of concern by yemeni officials, as well as u.s. officials last night, that protests could be happening yet again today. now we know that they've happened. we're trying to find out if there are more protesters coming to the scene in the next few hours. >> mohammed, i have a question. this is brooke. we were talking to ben wedeman last night out of cairo. he was saying the difference there in the protest lately is not folks frustrated and angered
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over this particular film, but also sort of your street protesters, almost hijacking the protest. i'm curious if there's differentiation in sanaa. >> well we've heard out of sanaa so far has been that most of these protesters gathered because they were upset, particularly about this film. what's interesting is what we've heard is that most of them haven't seen this film, haven't even seen any clips from this film. but they've seen footage of protests that have happened in other parts of the region. but, what's always a concern is yemen. this is not a place that is immune to anti-american sentiment. and when there are large gatherings, and when there is anger being direct eed towards e u.s., or envoy or embassy it's easy to stoke anti-american sentiment that already exists there. >> and mohammed, this is the second straight day where we've seen these clashes with the security forces there. there does veep to be buy-in from the reege i'm in yemen to battle back these protesters. >> absolutely.
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yesterday the president was very, very quick to issue a statement of apology to u.s. president barack obama as well as the american people. he said that this was unacceptable. he deployed a lot more security outside of the embassy, said there needed to be a thorough investigation and any perpetrators of this violence needed to be brought to swift justice. but the question is will the yemeni security forces actually be able to control this angry tide? one of the most interesting things that happened yesterday was the question of how exactly was an angry mob of about 2,000 people able to get that close to the american embassy? how were they able to breach security and start scaling the wall? this is one of the most protected sites not just in sanaa but in all of yemen. the question was where were the yemeni security forces to begin with? why did they allow this crowd to get this close to the embassy. >> mohammed jamjoom it is great to have you in the region monitoring the events going on in yemen.
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we'll check back with you in a little bit. >> answer my question on security in cairo, in benghazi and now sanaa. coming up we have to talk about the united states here and our role. how should the u.s. answer the violence there in the middle east? former ambassador to india, tim roemer joins us live from washington next. >> and the state department now sort of correcting president obama, insisting that egypt is, in fact, an ally of america. what is the future of u.s./egyptian relatis? they're whole grain good... and yummy good. real fruit pieces. 12 grams of whole grains and a creamy yogurt flavored coating. quaker yogurt granola bars. treat yourself good.
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welcome back to "starting point," everyone. as we watch the events unfolding in the middle east this morning, a lot of people in washington and all around this country still parsing a comment by president obama about the u.s. relationship with egyp >> once again, in case you missed it, here's what he said. >> i don't think that we would consider them an ally. but we don't consider them an enemy. they are a new government that
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is trying to find its way. they were democratically elected. i think that we are going to have to see how they respond to this incident. >> yesterday afternoon, spokesman wright from the pentagon trying to explain that and using a very particular phrase to do it, quote/unquote, legal term of art. >> so, i'm not sure i know what that means. >> i don't know what that means, either. >> we're going to bring in foreign affairs reporter elise labott. elise, what's the deal? >> well, a lot of things going on, guys. basically, president obama, i think, misspoke a little bit. because basically what you heard secretary of the state department spokesman victoria knewen say yesterday, egypt is what they call a non-nato ally. a major non-nato ally. that means that the u.s. doesn't have any treaties with egypt, per se, but does consider egypt a major ally in terms of a very
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strategic partnership with this country. so even jay carney who yesterday, this white house press secretary, who said we don't have any treaties with egypt, in april he called egypt an important ally. what president obama was trying to do here is send a message to egypt's president mohamed mursi that, listen, we give you a lot of aid. we're talking about $30 billion or more in u.s. aid to egypt every year, and that aid is not guaranteed if you're not going to if you're not going to condemn this violence that's taking place at the embassy and also protect our diplomatic facilities. the thing is, though, is that the u.s. is not necessarily allies with the government. that's why the u.s. was willing to help get rid of president hosni mubarak even though he was an ally of the united states. u.s. is allies with countries, not governments. and that's why i think his comments have caused such a
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stir. >> elise labott in the state department for us this morning. giving us some insight into what the president said. let's figure out some more about maybe what he meant from someone close to the president, part of his wider foreign policy team. tim roemer is a foreign policy adviser to the obama campaign. he's also a former ambassador to india under president obama. and ambassador roemer, is egypt an ally of the united states? what did the president mean to say there? >> well, good morning, john, and brooke. nice to see you bright and early this morning. listen, i think what the president was feeling yesterday, given the tragic loss of our ambassador and our other three american family members, we feel like they're family, as american s and prayer to his conversation with president mursi yesterday i think he was feeling some frustration. our embassy had been attacked in cairo. the president was very straightforward in his conversation with the president of egypt yesterday, saying, we
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give you a lot of assistance. here's what we expect back. a condemnation of the violence that took place against our embassy. better protection of our people. we want you to honor the alliance or the treaty that you have with israel. we want to see progress on human rights and democracy. and with that $1.6 billion that the american people invest in our national security and assistance to the people of egypt, we better see progress on all these things. i think you'll see the legislative branch, and congress, debate some of these things, rightfully so, in the next few days. >> mr. ambassador, you know the president. just once again underscore this line to our viewers. i don't think that we would consider them, egypt, an ally but we don't consider them an enemy. so now, fast forward to this morning, we have now gotten word via twitter from the muslim brotherhood that they're saying to the protesters, you can protest but only in tahrir
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square. do you think that was message sent by president obama, message received, muslim brotherhood? >> i think the president shows that he has been a steady, strong and decisive leader by the way he's handled that situation. look, brooke, you know this better than anybody following the news over the last four or five years, the president has shown force when needed using our military and special ops. getting bin laden, decimating al qaeda through the drone program. he has shown balance in bringing our troops back from iraq -- >> sure, but -- >> he's sending a message. he's sending a message with the ships, destroyers that are in the north mediterranean sea, with the marines going in to our embassy. you know, in northern africa. he's sending a message by talking to all the presidents in the region, about what american values are, condemning the film. but also saying we will not tolerate attacks on our embassy,
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our consulates, and we want to see them doing the right thing and protecting this and we want to see peaceful action here, rather than what we've seen the last couple days. i think you see a very strong and decisive and steady president, and, brooke, yesterday we got good news on the fe you've also seen the president talk about nation building here at home, in america, and trying to make sure we're getting jobs, and growth, and investing in the people here at home. >> but mr. ambassador the fact is the state department, the defense department, had to do a little cleanup after the president's statement. they did clarify that egypt is, in fact, still a non-nato ally of the united states. and the reason i bring this up is because president obama himself criticized mitt romney. he said governor romney has a tendency to shoot first and aim later. couldn't this be an example of the president shooting first and aiming later when it comes to egypt here? he shot first saying egypt's not an ally, then his administration had to clean it up the next day.
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>> i would disagree politely this early in the morning, john, with your statement. first of all, i would say, governor romney, his trip overseas to great britain where he fumbled the olympic issue, where he failed to thank our troops in his acceptance spooech and recognize the great sacrifice that our families make in afghanistan, jumping all over this tragedy within 24 hours, and not having a period of respect and prayer and mourning the loss of these four families, those are significant mistakes. those reflect the kind of leadership that we may see from governor romney. the president, on the other hand, i think he was sending a message. i think yesterday he was saying, look, i'm going to talk to the president of egypt and i'm going to tell him what a partnership with the egyptian people means. >> let's talk -- >> what our expectations are, and they better protect our troops, they better respect israel, they better move forward
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on democracy. >> so the president, of course, has a message. but so does rover romney. that brings me to something that someone who said -- >> what is that again? >> let me get to it ambassador roemer. we're going to be talking with the romney campaign a little later on the show. here is what he said just yesterday. quote, the president can't even keep track of who's our ally or not. this is amateur hour, it's amateur hour. this was yesterday to "the washington post." but ambassador roemer let's be honest, if mitt romney said this, the obama camp would be all over him. wouldn't they be scolding him, and congress designated egypt a non-nato ally. they'd be all over it. >> look, brooke, again, i think we're get pg in, you know, a little bit of the political season here. hopefully we can talk about foreign policy. the president was sending a firm message -- >> i understand. -- >> the president of egypt --
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>> sir with all due respect, would -- >> president obama got that message yesterday, brooke, and said contrary to what he'd been saying for days that he then condemned the violence. >> i understand. this is what -- forgive me for speaking over you. but this is what the romney team said and if mitt romney had said this about egypt, do you agree that president obama, in this election season which you point out, would have jumped all over him? >> i don't agree with that, brooke. you know, i think the president, you know, after this tragedy, when we, you know, lost our ambassador and three other people of our families, did not make this a political season like governor romney did. governor romney has made a score of mistakes in his foreign policy. i think he wants to hearken back to the playbook during the bush years of everything can be solved by intervention of our military.
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and that's not the course of action. it's strength of our military, and our special operations, as the president has shown with the drone program, des nation of al qaeda, getting bin laden. it's also putting more troops into afghanistan when need be, as the president's done. and then set a firm timetable for them to come home. the bush administration, and all due prespecific to the ambassador, who was quoted in "the post" today, they have one playbook. they have one page in the playbook. and that is let's send our young men and women into war to solve the problem. in iran, syria, libya, that's always their solution. >> ambassador tim roemer, thank you for being with us this morning. as you said, it is always nice to have you. >> we appreciate it. >> brooke you can always talk over me. >> thank you, sir. i appreciate it. thanks for waking up early with us. >> always nice to be on your show. >> thank you. we'll be talking to ambassador williamson a little later.
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and we'll see how he responds to that. still a lot more happening this morning. up your game. up the ante. and if you stumble, you get back up. up isn't easy, and we ought to know. we're in the business of up. everyday delta flies a quarter of million people while investing billions improving everything from booking to baggage claim. we're raising the bar on flying and tomorrow we will up it yet again.
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outrage against america is spreading across north africa and the middle east this morning, with new developments unfolding this morning in libya. >> four men have been arrested and libyan officials say they are suspected of instigating that attack on the u.s. consulate that killed four americans earlier this week. >> want to take you to tripoli where jomana karadsheh joins us live. what can you tell us about the suspects? >> brooke, we know little about the identity of these suspects. we heard yesterday from the libyan prime minister speaking with cnn in an interview where he said that at least one of
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those men is a libyan national, that the arrests took place yesterday in the city of benghazi. we know from libyan officials that apparently it was photographs taken around the consulate on the night of the attack that led to these arrests. they said that some witnesses identified some of those in the pictures and they came forward with names. that led to the arrests. but also conflicting reports regarding that. today we're hearing from a senior libyan officials saying that those detained were not directly involved in the attack, that they had links to the extremist group that possibly carried out that attack. so we should be finding out more in the coming hours from the libyan government on the identity of those arrested. >> jomana karadsheh for us in tripoli, thank you. >> we are staying on top of the developing crisis in the middle east all morning long. also, ahead on "starting point," another story. remember these headlines? it was a great white concert that turned deadly.
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the rhode island night club fire that killed 100 people in just ten minutes. now, for the first time, we have inside information of exactly what happened from a man who knows this case better than anyone. stay with us. heart healthy diet. that's true. ...but you still have to go to the gym. ♪ the one and only, cheerios
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welcome back to "starting point," everyone. you may remember this. it was one of the tedliest nightclub tranldyes ever. by the rock band great white at a bar in long island. >> the band's pyrotech knicks
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killed 100 people in a matter of minutes. a new book called "killer show," author and attorney john barylick join us now. we both read the book. we were marveling at all the intricacy and detail. you lived this for seven years, instrumental in getting that $176 million in settlement for these victims whachlt went wrong? >> it was a combination of things. what we learned over those seven years of research is that it was not simply one blunder that caused this. it was the confluence of numerous instances of a band and club owners putting profit and convenience over safety which, combined, cause d a fatal critical mass. if one person had had done the right thing, it all could have been avoided. >> so much, it seems like, what you write, this perfect storm, the killer show, was this foam. let me quote you from the book and you can show me what you have. the fire marshal goes through
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and you say, the fire marshal would testify after the fire that he, quote, unquote, did not see the 900 square foot of egg crate foam covering the entire west end of the station nightclub. he did, however, notice the inward swinging stage door had been cited as a correctible violation on two previous inspections. that door was completely covered with the gray egg-foam material. >> it was not fire retardant. >> hold it up. >> it was put up in a clumsy attempt at sound proofing. the fire inspector and his delegates over three inspections over three years overlooked this substance that covered the entire west end of the club. >> this is what just lit up like kindling, right? >> absolutely. this is extremely flammable. but interestingly yields its energy rather quickly and would have burned out quite quickly. what we did learn over seven
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years of research on this is that in parts of the club there was another substance behind the polyurethane. that was polyeth lien, which is much denser, much higher energy yield. once they got through the polyurethane to the polyethylene -- >> sprinklers never put in because they thought it was grandfathered. what lessons can we learn here? >> i like going to concerts. tell me what i need to be looking for. >> as concert goers, we are our best fire marshals. we have to look ourselves when you get to a venue, look at the building. does it look well maintained? are the staff well trained in any respect? as you get to your seat, have you passed through any narrow pinch point that would be a problem getting out? most important when you get to your seat, find the closest exit
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and share that information with your party so that if anything goes wrong, you're heading to that exist immediately. >> you were in a show in portland, oregon, and turned around, didn't you? >> it was shortly after the fire. i was in oregon. i was with friends. walked into a very populous club. it took about ten minutes to make our way to the room we were going to. i look ed around and said it tok us ten minutes and no one was in a hurry to get here. how would we ever get out? >> buy the cd. listen to the music at home. important lesson there. john barylick, thank you very much. a lot of new details about the station nightclub fire in rhode island. thank you for joining us. >> thank you, john, brooke. new reports of violence in yemen happening right now. u.s. is securing embassies worldwide. now this. libya has arrested four people in connection with the assault on the u.s. consulate there. >> we are covering this story throughout the world here. reporters at the pentagon,
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which is why, at liberty mutual insurance, auto policies come with new car replacement and accident forgiveness if you qualify. see what else comes standard at libertymutual.com. liberty mutual insurance. responsibility. what's your policy? check out the latest collection of snacks from lean cuisine. creamy spinach artichoke dip, crispy garlic chicken spring rolls. they're this season's must-have accessory. lean cuisine. be culinary chic. morning, everyone. i'm john berman. >> soledad is off today. she will be back monday. here is "starting point" for this friday, new reports of violence. u.s. embassies on high alert right now to secure americans
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overseas. outrage surrounding this anti-islam film is growing. >> on the hunt for the killers. four arrests made in a libyan consulate attack that killed a u.s. ambassador and three staffers. >> how should we answer to all the violence? what is the future of u.s. relations in the arab world? covering this developing story for you the way only cnn can. arwa damon is live, richard williamson and cnn's candy crowley. it is friday, september 14th. "starting point" begins right now. as we roll into this hour, we have three gentlemen sitting here at the table in the studio in new york. bless you, jo.
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inside the u.s. embassy. bobby ghosh, we'll talk with you about what we're seeing there today. and from "the new yorker," ryan li lizza. and jamie rubin, gentlemen, good morning. >> with friday prayers end iing around the world right now, u.s. embassies around the world are bracing for more. >> the anger, defiance that began monday is now spreading to 11 countries, as far east as india. >> mayhem a few hours ago. this new development now, the ruling muslim brotherhood is calling for calm and calling off a nationwide protest. but a huge single demonstration is planned for tahrir square in
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cairo. that will go on. >> police are firing warning shots to break up the mob. there yet again, day two, in the capital of sanaa. five protesters were killed as hundreds of protesters stormed the american embassy there yesterday. you've seen the pictures. they were climbing the walls, setting fires. water canons now pushing this mob back. >> there has been a major development in libya. the first arrests in connection with the attack that killed two well respected american diplomats and two former navy s.e.a.l.s. >> following the developments in cairo for us. as we were sort of anticipating some protests after the morning prayers. what is the crowd like? >> well, actually, the crowd here is getting larger now. it's growing steadily as protesters come from around cairo and descend on tahrir
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square. we have a few thousand protesters in tahrir square. if you go away from tahrir square about 100 to 200 yards toward the american embassy, you still have the clashes between the police and the protesters, the rock throwing. you have tear gas and something knew we're seeing are water canons being use d. the protesters, we saw the protesters try to tear down this brick concrete wall that is blocking the streets that lead to the embassy, about 10, 15 feet high. we saw protesters try to tear it down, so far unsuccessfully as police try to repel them aaway from that wall. >> ian lee, thank you very much. i hear it behind him. you can hear it as the crowds continue to grow larger. thank you. libyan authorities announcing the arrest of four men in connection with the deadly attack on the u.s. consulate in benghazi earlier this week. our ambassador to libya, christopher stevens, and staffer
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sean smith among those that killed. also killed glen doherty and tyrone woods, both former navy s.e.a.l.s. >> glen's mother finding it difficult to come to grips with the loss. >> we are devastated. he was a great friend and brother and really good at his job. and it's a huge loss for everyone. >> the voice of a mother. you can just hear the waivverin in her voice. arwa damon is live in benghazi. >> reporter: we were a short while ago at the compound where the attacks took place. it is quite chilling to be standing there, imaging how horrific and terrifying that entire ordeal must have been. the buildings are completely gutted, set ablaze, debris all
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over the place. some of the walls are splattered with blood. the head of the general national congress here was touring the facility as we were there as well, and he was telling us that they now believe -- the libyan government now believes this was a preplanned highly coordinated attack, be designated to cause maximum damage to the libyan/american relationship. that is why it was carried out with such ferocity, ending with devastating. at this point, information is not being released only saying that they do believe they were affiliated. we will see many extremist groups operating in this coun y country, especially in this part, the eastern part. the city of benghazi and areas around it, there are a number of extremist militias with training camps that operate with pure
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impunity. the government acknowledging at this point in time given their current capabilities as a government they are incapable of taking on these extremist elements. but the government now fully aware that it must somehow bring those who carried those out to justice, that it has to somehow impose rule of law or else risk the country disintegrating entirely. >> arwada damon in benghazi. the government in libya is incapable of controlling these extremist groups. you wrote about this in your piece. now that the dictators are gone, these extremists are left unchecked. >> we knew exactly what gadhafi or mubarak would do in egypt when protests like this would happen. he would send in his thugs and security and beat people, even to death, if necessary, and suppress any form of public protest. for one thing, these are democratically elected governments now. they can't do that.
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they have a responsibility and want to be reelected. some of the rage is real and some of the protest has to be allowed to happen. the question is, how do you control that? how do you prevent that from getting out of hand, as it has? the problem there is that these governments are not yet fully in control. the relationships with theseew elected governments are still a little fragile. so this is, in some ways, this is what the new democracies in the arab spring confront. weak central authority, poor policing and they have a populous that now feels free and empowered to protest whenever they feel like it. more importantly, there are groups within this society who are taking this anger and cranking it up and bringing it out into the street in this organized way. >> you are seeing police forces with a stronger presence on the
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street today. in yemen we've seen it over the last two adays. sta an encouraging sign, jamie, to the u.s.? >> yes. i think it is. the early response of the egyptian government was a little questionable. the first response seemed to focus on the film and not the violence and the breaking of the barrier between egypt and the u.s. compound there. that is egypt's responsibility, to control the perimeter. every country in the civilized world, an embassy has the right to expect the host government to protect its perimeter. that didn't happen in egypt. in the early hours after the protests began, some of the key officials seemed to be talking about the film. not about their own responsibility to protect the u.s. embassy. and i think perhaps president obama's phone call has made a difference. the president of egypt now seems to have moved his focus from the film to egypt's responsibility. and, obviously, in the case of libya, i think they've done
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every single thing we could reasonably expect from this fledgling government, from the words that were spoken, from the moment this happened to the steps they are now taking to arrest people, to try and track down -- you know, this was a very popular ambassador. i think the libyan government there in benghazi feels as bad as they can for their friends. >> and are ashamed. >> ashamed, yes. >> i want to bring in richard williamson, secretary of state under ronald reagan. he is currently the romney campaign senior foreign policy adviser. mr. ambassador, good morning to you. >> good morning. >> let's just begin with what we know today as far as the situation on the streets. we know of more rioting in yemen, in the capital city there. we could hear the crowds over our correspondent's shoulders in cairo. they are increasing in size, at least in tahrir square specifically. how do you interpret everything that's happening?
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>> i think what we're seeing in yemen and egypt and libya is turmoil that's very disturbing, that crowds u.s. interests and, frankly, is part of a pattern where they see less resolve and strength of the united states. and they feel they can have these sort of assaults on u.s. sovereign soil. so it's very disturbing. and it's part of a larger middle east where we have things spinning out of control in syria and we have iran to engage in nuclear breakout. it's a region that has great stress and where america has to provide some strength and leadership that's been lacking. >> ambassador williamson, you are an adviser, as we said, to the romney campaign. you have been speaking out quite loudly the last few days about what you see as the deficiencies in the obama administration, how they've handled the situation in the middle east, specifically in libya. i want to read you a quote, what
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you said yesterday. there's a pretty compelling story, that if you had a president romney, you would be in a different situation. for the first time since jimmy carter we've had an ambassador assassinated. that seems to suggest you are blaming president obama, his administration, for the death of ambassador christopher stevens. >> first, let me be perfectly clear. the people responsible for this horrendous act and this murder are the people that raided that consulate and committed those acts. having said that, having served as chief of mission abroad, having worked in the state department, i know there are things that can and should have been done. when there's a change of regime in libya, we should have learned the lessons of the baltics, of sierra leone. we go in there to help for
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reconciliation and reconstruction. the administration chose not to do that. second -- so some of the capacity of the new government, which is a moderate islamist government, to be able to deal with these and other issues would be greater. second, 9/11 is 9/11. it's not a surprise that this is a day where bad things might happen. and it's disturbing to get some reports of intelligence that may have not been followed up. i thenk the reporters like yourselves have to ask what was known, when did the president, secretary of state know it? what action did they take? i spent time in libya. i knew the ambassador when i was the president's special envoy to sudan. i had negotiations in tripoli. we knew the consulate in benghazi was less secure. did he really have to travel on 9/11? the big policy questions are,
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are we going to be more forward leaning in providing leadership? we've not done that. >> rest assured, cnn is asking the questions about what the u.s. knew about these attacks before they happened. we asked rogers yesterday who said there were simply no warnings. those were his words. of course, we're looking into this right now. you did mention you have been stationed overseas and served in past administrations. you also certainly know that these attacks on embassies are things that have gone on for de decades. it happened in the reagan administration in beirut, through embassies throughout the world, throughout both bush administrations. it does happen sometimes without warning. correct? >> sometimes without warning. we know absolutely this was not without warning. there was evidence of what was going to happen in egypt a week or so ahead of time. second, we are in a heightened situation, post 9/11, on the anniversary, which has symbolic needs and symbolic reasons to be concerned about the safety of our people.
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and, third, there are real questions about what contingencies were on the table in the state department, to increase the security in libya. so i applaud you for continuing to pursue this story. there's conflicting evidence coming out. and some of it is not comforting. >> ambassador williamson, just back to john berman's original question, let me phrase it to you again. to quote you for the first time since jimmie carter we've had an american ambassador assassinated. are you saying had mitt romney been president, this wouldn' have happened? >> first, it's just a fact that we haven't had an ambassador assassinated since jimmie carter's presidency. second, i do think that governor romney, who has a view of the middle east, a view of the middle east that is stable and secure where people's dignity and pluralism and economic opportunity are recognized can be achieved, but it has to be achieved with u.s. leadership
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and u.s. leadership from the front, not behind. it means giving technical assistance to people. >> given all of these things you're pointing out, could it have been prevented? your a foreign policy guy. >> one of the difference would have been -- yeah, one of the differences was obama cut assistance to democracy and civil society groups in egypt dramatically when he came into office. >> with all due respect, sir, answer yes or no. >> with all due respect, answers are more complicated. so give me just 30 seconds. >> sure, you've got it. >> the u.s. government cut assistance to the reformers for two years when tahrir square began, the vice president of the united states said mubarak was a reformer, a democrat. the secretary of state reformer. we did get out in front. result was we didn't have relationships with the reformers. they didn't look to us.
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they didn't trust us. this gave room for the muslim brotherhood to succeed. the romney administration would be there, would be more active, trying to work with civil society, with reform movements so we would be partners in this evolution, not running behind and not seen as part of that. i think that changes the dynamic. and so, yes, there would be a difference. >> ambassador, just quickly, first of all, i don't see how changing our relationship with some of the reformers in egypt has anything to do with the attack in benghazi. but on this issue of america's alleged weakness in the middle east, is your position -- >> let's talk about benghazi then. >> i want to ask you about -- >> let's talk about benghazi then. >> you seem to be drawing a straight line from what you view as the obama administration's weakness, your word, in the middle east by actually inviting these attacks on u.s. government officials and embassies. is that your position? >> my position is the world's better off when america leads
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and so are other countries. our failure to do that contribute? yes, it contributes, just as it's contributing to the chaos and deaths in syria, where we now have 20,000 people killed, innocent people. and the u.s. has basically been missing in action as this has happened over the last 18 months. if i can go back to benghazi, one of the lessons of post conflict situations was that you stay in after the authoritarian leader falls. if you don't, it contributes to chaos and weak government. the clinton administration did that in the baltics, in kosovo. >> the balkans, i think you mean. >> excuse me, the balkans. i apologize. >> and i apologize. we have to leave this here, ambassador richard williamson, former assistant secretary of state and romney's senior foreign policy adviser. we appreciate it, sir. thank you very much. >> thank you very much. >> thank you, ambassador.
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we have so many questions still this morning of what's going on around the world. ahead on "starting point," he h made the anti-islam movie that has spawned the protests all over the world. but who is he? we look into the shady past of the so-called sam bacile. you see us, at the start of the day. on the company phone list that's a few names longer. you see us bank on busier highways. on once empty fields. everyday you see all the ways all of us at us bank are helping grow our economy. lending more so companies and communities can expand, grow stronger and get back to work. everyday you see all of us serving you, around the country, around the corner. us bank.
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♪ ♪ [ male announcer ] you've been years in the making. and there are many years ahead. join the millions of members who've chosen an aarp medicare supplement insurance plan insured by unitedhealthcare insurance company. go long. there are now reports that protesters are trying to storm the british embassies in sudan as well as the german embassies. stones were being thrown at the embassy in khartoum. flags are being dragged down. obviously as soon as we have more information, we'll bring it to you. just the latest news in a string of countries where these
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embassies are being stormed. >> we are learning more about the man behind that anti-muslim film that has triggered so much of this hatred against the u.s. the writer and director has been identified as sam bacile, but that name is a fake. miguel marquez went looking for him. >> reporter: brooke, john, the house behind me is what we have learned belongs to nakoula basseleynakoula. bacile, real name nakoula basseley nakoula, spent a year in prison, manufacturing methamphetamine and he spent another year in prison for fraud. sam bacile or nakoula basseley
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nakoula. the guy had several addresses, many social security numbers and lots of names. court documents show he used at least 17 different names, including sam bacile, p.j. to be alcoho alcohol, krtbal. nakoula basseley used his address to get credit cards and conduct the fraudulent activity that he carried out. he found out about it, called the police and hasn't seen him since. numbers associated with b aacile's many identities turn up nothing. >> the number you dialed is not a working number. >> reporter: even anti-islamic activists who workd with him say they don't know who he was. >> sam is not his real name. i knew that. >> same for actors in his movie.
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>> he told me he was from israel, told me he was going to show the movie in egypt and either i assumed he was from egypt or -- >> he led you to believe he was egyptian? >> yes. because that's what i believed. >> reporter: this is the best address we have for sam bacile or nakoula basseley. you can see all the media is camped out here. we'll try one more time to talk to him. mr. bacile, mr. nakoula? miguel marquez with cnn. this house, the center of an intense search for answers for a man who has many questions hanging over his head. he also told friends and co-workers he is israeli-american. cnn has discovered that's also not true. we talked to people in the neighborhood, people who know him. they say he is egyptian and a
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member of a christian church. >> great report from california. thank you very much. >> miguel, thank you. coming up next on "starting point." the duchess caught with her top off, bikini top off and the palace now responding this morning. it's a game changer. ♪ it means cleaner, cheaper american-made energy. but we've got to be careful how we get it. design the wells to be safe. thousands of jobs. use the most advanced technology to protect our water. billions in the economy. at chevron, if we can't do it right, we won't do it at all. we've got to think long term. we've got to think long term. ♪
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french gossip magazine has now published topless photos of her on a private holiday in the south of france. the palace is now responding saying the royals are flat out angry and in disbelief and are exploring their legal options. prince william and kate are in malaysia on a tour of asia. >> there you go. >> there you go. i just hate it for her. she wants to be on a private vacation. probably she and her husband are out, you know, hanging out on a boat and someone with a camera, somewhere snapped this. >> i have to say piers morgan, who i defer to on all things royal on your side, says this is an outrage, but -- but -- >> if you're kate middleton you don't go topless. >> the sad reality of being a royal is cameras follow you everywhere. >> it's not as stupid as a vegas pic. >> i'm with you there. >> and it was only the top
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apparently. >> very demure. where is the security? if you're guarding a celebrity like that, knowing that there are paparazzi everywhere certainly you're looking at the parameter to see if you can spot a camera. i don't get this. this seems like such an amateurish error. >> thank you, gentlemen, for humoring us on this subject here. i'm sure we will come back to this. >> we all feel for her, after we buy the magazine. >> exactly right. politics, we want to talk about that, too. president obama, three-fold in three battleground states, how critical is this for mitt romney? we want to break this down next with our very own candy crowley. you are watching "starting point." sleek new styling... sophisticated dual cockpit design, and sport sculpted seats. available chevrolet mylink infotainment system. the all-new 2013 chevrolet malibu.
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welcome back to "starting point." anti-american protests flaring up overnight. u.s. embassies around the world are bracing for more. >> also new this hour, protesters are trying to storm both the german and british embassies in sudan. police are firing tear gas to try to stop the 5,000 people. many of them hurdling stones. the anger has now spread to 11 countries from egypt to morocco to india. let's look at these pictures live from cairo. thousands upon thousands in tahrir square, sort of the nucleus that it was of the revolution last year, muslim brotherhood calling for calm, calling off the protest. the cover story here, getting information about the protesters in tahrir.
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>> there have been tweets suggesting the protesters are turning hostile to its foreign generals. i'm a little concerned about our colleagues out there. >> they did call the muslim brotherhood to call off nationwide protests but did suggest there would be this one large protest in tahrir. that, in itself, could ignite things, drawing everyone to one sing place. >> but it is a square that can be contained to some degree. they're hoping, i think, people will come, express themselves and quietly disperse. we've seen over the past year and a half that the mob has a mind of its own and has a tendency to go off in directions where organizing these things don't always intend. it's not that far from the american embassy. it's a very short walk. >> we want to talk politics. and to do that, we bring in our best chief correspondent candy crowley. big news this morning, obviously, thee polls. virginia, florida, ohio. the polls up on the screen.
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walk us through what you've been seeing. >> well, you know, what we're seeing now is that in three key states where mitt romney has to do well, he is now behind. and it's not just a one or two-point race. we are seeing that in florida and virginia. right now you're looking at ohio, actually. there's a seven-point difference. president obama leading ohio by seven points. that's not great. now look at flchlt there's a five-point differential. it's the same thing in virginia. all things considered you would rather be ahead in these polls than from behind. is it undoable for mitt romney? it is not. going into the fall campaign, the president clearly has the edge. >> as we always say, no republican has ever won the white house without also winning ohio. >> i try not to say that. but you're right. can i just add that the fact is that you look at all three of those states. mitt romney has to win them.
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that's troublesome when you say it's 50 states. not really, it's six or seven states and it's very hard to put together those 270 elect oral votes for mitt romney if you don't win all of those. >> polls showing him trailing barack obama, this aired a little while ago. let's see what he said. >> beating an incumbent is never easy. the president exudes an air of likability and friendliness, which is endearing. at the siem time i think people recognize that he has not done the job they expected him to do. >> do they recognize that yet, candy? this doesn't seem to be showing up in the polls. >> i think if you look at how you think things are right now, we had a cnn/orc poll out that says how is the financial situation right now? how do you think things are going in the united states? 60% plus said not well.
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then they said how do you think they'll be doing in a year? about the same amount said i think they'll be better. there is a recognition. i think he's right on the facts of it, that there is a recognition that all things are not well with the economy right now. and that certainly is what the romney team has wanted to spinoff of. the question is, do they think this is the right track? do they think the trajectory is right? if american voters look at this economy and say we think it we keep going this way, it will be fine. then that is bad news for the romney campaign. >> candy, ryan. my view is that if romney loses, the post mortem is going to be that he just decided that it was enough that the economy was bad and obama would lose and he would be sort of there as the default candidate. and when he picked paul ryan it seemed maybe he was going to change that strategy and elevate this into more of a choice remember than a simple referendum. i don't know if you agree with me or not.
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it just seems like the romney campaign hasn't shifted that strategy that a few weeks ago they signaled they were going to shift into this sort of new mode and that they're still just relying on obama's collapse rather than articulating a positive message for their campaign. >> well, certainly, they've been knocked off message, for sure, in the middle east for the last couple of days. and that's a whole different t kettle of fish. it seems to me that they are now about three, four, 4 1/2 hours or so -- my math isn't great this early in the morning where mitt romney can say here is the deal. here is what i propose. it's difficult to do this, as you know, out on the campaign trail. in many, many ways the campaign trail is designed for the faithful on both sides. i rarely have been to some kind of forum during an election year where it wasn't just filled with
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people who were already going to go vote. so it's tough to say, and here's my alternative, in any kind of great length. when mitt romney has had a chance to do that in various interviews, i will say, he hasn't. will he carry that out in the three 90-minute times he has to address a really super large audience? >> his last chance. >> yeah. >> candy crowley, thank you. we'll see you sunday morning on "state of the union." what is it, more than 80% of the folks strongly support a candidate. so most people have made up their mind and and highly energized on both sides now. >> some of the top stories we're following. short term spending measure passes the house and now moves to the senate. party leaders agreed to this solution earlier this summer. current funding for federal agency expires during the end of the month. federal reserve going to pump $40 billion a month into the u.s. economy, yet another
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round of stimulus. they will also keep interest rates at historic lows. ben bernanke hopes that will lead you to more buying, more borrowing. not everyone agrees, including mitt romney, who spoke to abc news. >> what bernanke is saying is that the president is saying is wrong. the president is saying the economy is making progress, coming back. bernanke is can a isaying, no, not. i've got to print more money. >> the dow gained more than 200 points. now futures are up ahead of the opening bell today. >> there is new evidence of the syrian government's assault on its own people. video posted on youtube shows a plane firing what appears to be a rocket over the town in the suburbs of damascus. 60 people were killed yesterday in the area that was surrounding the syria capital. forcing the evacuation of 35,000 people. look at that smoke.
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the volcano of fire started spewing ash and fire near the capital city of antigua and cnn ireporter happened to be close by and took this breathtaking video with, of course, his iphone. this is the sixth time this year this particular volcano has erupted. >> i think i would miss my shot. >> ireporter was working, not golfing. >> fair point. that does change everything. >> ahead on "starting point" a very special guest is coming in, known for his dancing moves but actor j.r. martinez is putting on his running shoes. you're watching "starting point." csocial security. man 1: i want facts. straight talk. tell me your plan... and what it means for me. woman 2: i'm tired of the negative ads and political spin. that won't help me decide. man 2: i earned my medicare and social security.
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just in to us here at cnn, we've been reporting about this embassy, german embassy in khartoum in sudan. it is engulfed in flames. thousands of protesters are storming embassy as well as the british embassy in khartoum in response to that film mocking the prophet muhammad. no personnel are believed to be inside. next on "starting point" we'll take a turning point here. he won ""dancing with the stars" and now jr martinez has a new goal in sight. >> running, marathon run? what's happening? i tried weight loss plans... but their shakes aren't always made for people with diabetes. that's why there's glucerna hunger smart shakes.
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so our next guest is famous for his moves. we watched him on dancing with the stars, as well as his soap opera role on "all my children." one of his biggest achievements was fighting for our country in iraq when he was severely injured when his vehicle hit a land mine back in 2003. he suffered severe burns to more than 40% of his body. >> during his recovery, he discovered he could help our burn patients and is taking it a step further. he will be running the new york city marathon. he is, in fact, running the new york city marathon on behalf of timex. >> i don't know if i'm running the whole way. >> tell us.
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you obviously -- you've taken on challenges before. now a marathon, i do have to tell you, is 26 miles. >> 26.2 miles. they say because you actually weave through a lot of the people you end up, because the timex watch, it monitors your pace, distance, your heart rate. but you can actually end up running about 26.8 or point nine miles. i'm like, wait a minute. that's a deal breaker for me. >> not only are you then running this marathon, you are starting last? >> last. >> dead last place? >> dead last. >> every time you pass someone -- >> i get to watch you, you, you and you run off. have fun. be excited. go over the bridge and here i am just watching you go. >> and the reason is? >> timex is committed to donating $1 to the new york youth program which benefits a lot of children in the new york area and essentially teaches
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them about running and health and lifestyle. my goal is -- an amazing job last year, she raised just under $31,000. my goal this year -- i'm not going to sit there and say i'm going to try to beat her time but my goal is to raise $31,000. >> i have run this before. >> good for you. >> it sounds like i'm bragging, but wait. i had to be carried over the finish line by a friend because i essentially collapsed at the end. so how is the training going? >> i have motivation. it's going well. the difficult part for me is that i travel all the time. i'm doing a lot of motivational speaking. and so it's -- the good thing about this watch, timex gps ironman, it tracks my pace, heart rate and my distance. i can go into a city and not know exactly where i am, but
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just go run and it tells me you've been running for this amount of miles, your heart rate's this. i'm up to 11 miles now. >> good for you. >> 11 miles. i have less than two months away. i've heard what's keeping me grounded is i've heard people say that run marathons is that you usually only train up to 18 to 20 miles before the marathon, never really train to do the full 26. if i keep enhancing every single week a mile i'll be at 18 miles a week before the marathon. i'll be right there. >> how many people run this? >> essentially 47,000 people. >> if you win this thing -- >> i'm not winning this thing. it would be amazing, but i'm definitely not winning this thing. i'm just going to commit to 31,000 that will be raised for the the program, which i went out on a limb and said if i only pass 25,000 people, guess what, ooh im dishing out money out of my own pocket but that program
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is getting $31,000. >> you're going to make up the gap? >> i'm going to make it up. running is amazing. you get to be outdoors. especially here in a city like new york, it's beautiful. you're always distracted. it's almost like when you walk in a city, before you know it, you're walking 50 blocks. i think running is the same thing. everybody can follow me at twitter. iamjmartinez. there's actually going to be -- timex did pretty much give me a coach. i have a coach that's going to be running alongside me. if you see a tweet it's not necessarily my language -- >> good luck to you. >> thank you. >> hopefully you're not going to be carried across. >> hopefully you'll have better success than i had. [ female announcer ] pop in a whole new kind of clean.
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usaa bank goes with you. visit us online to learn what makes our bank so different. jamie rubin had to leave us. gentlemen, you have the floor. >> what we're learning in the middle east is that there's going to be crises like this more and more often. weak democratically elected governments that do not have control over their streets and you have populations that feel empowered to speak their mind and voice their rage and organizations that are cranking t